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Periodicity and immortality in reversible computing. (English) Zbl 1173.68521
Ochmański, Edward (ed.) et al., Mathematical foundations of computer science 2008. 33rd international symposium, MFCS 2008, Toruń Poland, August 25–29, 2008. Proceedings. Berlin: Springer (ISBN 978-3-540-85237-7/pbk). Lecture Notes in Computer Science 5162, 419-430 (2008).
Summary: We investigate the decidability of the periodicity and the immortality problems in three models of reversible computation: reversible counter machines, reversible Turing machines and reversible one-dimensional cellular automata. Immortality and periodicity are properties that describe the behavior of the model starting from arbitrary initial configurations: immortality is the property of having at least one non-halting orbit, while periodicity is the property of always eventually returning back to the starting configuration. It turns out that periodicity and immortality problems are both undecidable in all three models. We also show that it is undecidable whether a (not-necessarily reversible) Turing machine with moving tape has a periodic orbit.
For the entire collection see [Zbl 1154.68021].

68Q05 Models of computation (Turing machines, etc.) (MSC2010)
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